Song Lyrics, poetry and, of course, tea

If you need some quick copy work, look no further than your iTunes or CD rack. Song lyrics are our culture’s poetry. All those poetic devices you want to teach your kids can be just as easily taught with a good song. For tomorrow’s tea, gather some of your favorites and ask your kids to pick a favorite song to share. Print the lyrics (you can Google song lyrics by putting the song title into the Google search bar and they will pop right up). Then while you sip, play the song and look at the lyrics together. Look for metaphor, simile, rhyme, rhythm, imagery, alliteration, internal rhyme (where the words rhyme in the middle of the line, not necessarily only at the end). It will be a refreshing break from books. (Hint: I do this in every comp class I teach at our homeschool co-op and it is the most favorite activity of the whole year.)

For my much loved moms, I recommend the following group (I know music can be controversial, but this duo of husband and wife is delightful and I hope you’ll agree – their lyrics, rich with poetry!):

The Weepies

Here’s one of my favorites off their first CD:

Gotta Have You

Gray, quiet and tired and mean
Picking at a worried seam
Itry to make you mad at me over the phone.
Red eyes and fire and signs
I’m taken by a nursery rhyme
I want to make a ray of sunshine and never leave home

No amount of coffee, no amount of crying
No amount of whiskey, no amount of wine
No, nothing else will do
I’ve gotta have you, I’ve gotta have you.

The road gets cold, there’s no spring in the middle this year
I’m the new chicken clucking open hearts and ears
Oh, such a prima donna, sorry for myself
But green, it is also summer
And I won’t be warm till I’m lying in your arms

I see it all through a telescope: guitar, suitcase, and a warm coat
Lying in the back of the blue boat, humming a tune…

3 Responses to “Song Lyrics, poetry and, of course, tea”

  1. Kay says:

    Perfect..wonderful timing.
    Anna has been searching the lyrics of her playlist and has made a lyrics file folder for herself.
    Lots of Beatles music and other new songs I never heard and truly love. Great Day even if it is cold and raining in PA.
    Thanks again for inspiring me to “sit down” and listen:)

    Love The Weepies too!

  2. Katie says:

    Julie, Thanks for the fun song and the great idea. Most pre-teens and teens love music. I have a few favorite new artists who are amazing poets, truly.

  3. Ellen says:

    Two of my favorites for figurative language are Cole Porter’s “You’re the Top” and that Christmas classic, “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.” It’s fun to update the references in “You’re the Top” but there’s no topping some of the lines in Mr. Grinch!